Guanethidine-induced adrenergic sympathectomy augments endoneurial perfusion and lowers endoneurial microvascular resistance

Douglas W. Zochodne, Zhongxian Huang, Kim K. Ward, Phillip A. Low

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Chronic administration of guanethidine sulfate in the rat induces a selective adrenergic neuropathy. We studied the effects of guanethidine-induced adrenergic sympathectomy on rat sciatic nerve blood flow (NBF), microvascular resistance (MR), vessel caliber and norepinephrine (NE) content. A control group of animals was studied following chronic administration of mammalian Ringer's solution. NBF and MR were measured with an endoneurial microelectrode, using the technique of hydrogen clearance (HC). Following HC, the sciatic nerve was perfused with India Ink, removed, frozen and sectioned. Measurements were made of endoneurial microvessel numbers, diameter, circumference and area. The contralateral sciatic nerve was removed for measurements of NE content. In guanethidine-treated animals we observed elevated NBF, reduced MR and dilated microvessels. Numbers of microvessels and fascicular areas were similar to controls. NE content was markedly reduced following sympathectomy. These studies suggest that NBF, unlike cerebral blood flow (CBF), is regulated by its adrenergic input. Removal of adrenergic innervation of the vasa nervorum appears to result in a loss of tonic vasoconstrictive action.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)112-117
Number of pages6
JournalBrain Research
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Jun 11 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology


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